Newlight Technologies Inc., Huntington Beach, Calif., is partnering with Nike to explore the use of AirCarbon, a carbon-negative biomaterial produced by microorganisms from the ocean. AirCarbon is currently used in fashion applications as a carbon-negative substitute for leather and plastic in products including eyewear, wallets and bags. Nike will explore the use of AirCarbon in a variety of applications, with the goal of advancing the company’s mission to create products that are better for athletes and the planet.
“Materials account for 70 percent of Nike’s total carbon footprint, and we’re accelerating our efforts and exploring new opportunities in this space,” said NIKE Inc. chief sustainability officer Noel Kinder in a press release from Newlight.
Newlight uses naturally occurring microorganisms from the ocean that eat air and greenhouse gas and convert it inside of their cells into AirCarbon, an energy storage material, also known as polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB), that is approximately 40 percent oxygen from air and 60 percent carbon from greenhouse gas by weight. AirCarbon is certified carbon negative by SCS Global Services, resulting in a net reduction in CO2e in the atmosphere through production, and can be melted into a range of forms, from fiber and sheet to solid shapes.
“Our mission is change at scale, and there are few better partners in the world than Nike to help achieve that,” said Newlight CEO Mark Herrema.